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  (Source: Stuart Isett/The New York Times )
Amazon says these sales taxes are "unconstitutional and counterproductive"

Amazon has fully committed itself to its effort against the collection of sales taxes, and it continues to prove this dedication over and over as it cuts ties with state after state.

After cutting ties with states like Texas, where Texas State Comptroller Susan Combs charged Amazon $269 million in unpaid sales taxes, and Illinois, where Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) plans to introduce a bill that would force Amazon to collect sales tax called the Main Street Fairness Act, Amazon is now looking to turn its back on California as well after Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that would enforce the collection of online sales tax. 

"We oppose this bill because it is unconstitutional and counterproductive," said Amazon in an e-mail to Californian affiliates. "It is supported by big-box retailers, most of which are based outside California, that seek to harm the affiliate advertising programs of their competitors. As a result, we will terminate contracts with all California residents that are participants in the Amazon Associates Program as of the date (if any) that the California law becomes effective."

Amazon also noted that these sales taxes "spur job and income losses." But Amazon has to do what it feels it should do, and with this bill in place, Amazon won't think twice about cutting ties with its 10,000 California-based sales affiliates.

Amazon is the largest online retailer with more than 90 million registered buyers and $34 billion in annual sales. In recent times, it has encountered increased pressure from certain U.S. states to collect online sales taxes since the retailer's affiliates operate within those states. In addition, some U.S. states see an online sales tax on Amazon purchases as a way of digging themselves out of large state budget deficits. 

But Amazon refuses to back down. Last month, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said the U.S. states' demands were unconstitutional, citing a 1992 Supreme Court decision that excuses Amazon and other remote sellers from having to collect taxes in U.S. states that do not have the company's employees or warehouses operating within its borders. 

As of right now, Amazon collects taxes in Kansas, Kentucky, New York, North Dakota and Washington. In other U.S. states where Amazon does not collect sales taxes, customers are to document and pay tax on out-of-state untaxed sales, but rarely do because they either don't know about this or just don't care.

Brick-and-mortar stores like Best Buy and Wal-Mart retaliated saying that Amazon has an unfair advantage due to its lack of sales tax collection in other states.

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Tax Evasion
By PheonixD on 7/1/2011 2:44:42 AM , Rating: 2
Amazon has a history of moving their warehouse to a low-customer base state that is close to a high-customer base state for the sole reason of evading sales taxes in the states where they sell MOST of their merchandise. Al Capone was sent to jail on tax evasion charges. Why do we not charge Amazon with the same offense? To have a functioning government which creates the very business environment that Amazon benefits tremendously from requires money. Everyone should pay their fair share. All these posters complaining about taxes should move to Somalia and see if their no-government ideals really produce the kind of society they would wish to live in.

RE: Tax Evasion
By Cerin218 on 7/1/2011 1:23:25 PM , Rating: 2
I agree with you. I currently live in a state that is nearly 6 BILLION in deficit, but the answer is to raise taxes so that they can publicly fund 600 MILLION of a new Vikings stadium. So I am right there with you when you talk about how big government is careful with the tax money that they currently spend and make sure that they won't need to take more from the people because they have worked so hard to eliminate waste. You know, like the 5 BILLION we just gave Pakistan. Nothing makes me happier than working hard to raise another countries standard of living. I hear everyone whine about how others should pay their "fair share". What is their "fair share"? Is that like half of this country where people don't have to pay tax at all, even though many of that 50% consume the services that the others are paying for? Fair like that?

RE: Tax Evasion
By Reclaimer77 on 7/2/2011 8:55:21 AM , Rating: 2
You're an idiot. Amazon pays IT'S taxes. They aren't evading taxes. It's illegal, and Unconstitutional, to make Amazon and other vendors collect your taxes FOR the state. And every attempt to do so has been slapped down by a Federal judge.

RE: Tax Evasion
By mindless1 on 7/2/2011 1:47:12 PM , Rating: 2
Most businesses do this, we can't fairly penalize Amazon for trying to maximize profits when that's inherently what a (any) business seeks to do.

Logically it makes sense to position a warehouse near a large population, but outside that region if they don't need the government resources the population does.

If you don't equally make use of government services, it does not seem unreasonable to me that you shouldn't have to pay as much for them.

“We do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone.” -- Steve Jobs

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